My name is Zarah and this is my first dual sport ride. My husband, Mike aka Baldbeemer has been riding bikes for most of his life. Mostly street bikes. A couple of years ago he brought home a used BMW 1150 GS and started lurking on the ADV site. At this point my interest was peaked. Mike’s birthday present to me this year was the MSF class. Here I was, just turned 41 and had never been at the helm of a motorcycle before. You only live once so off I went, I passed and got my license. I bought a 2002 DRZ400S and I’ve spent the last couple of months practicing on the dirt roads around our house, riding the tarmac around town and lurking here on ADV. Mike's a dirty bike whore who feels the need to have a different bike every year or so and had sold his 1150 GS and currently has a BMW R1200RT so he bought himself a 1997 Honda 650L to go riding with me. <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-comfficeffice" /><o></o> It’s Saturday October 3, 2009 and I’m ready to do my first real ride. Our starting point is our house in Ramona, CA. Our route will take us through town to Black Canyon Road, which is dirt, back onto the tarmac to Santa Ysabel and up to the town of Julian for some apple pie. Then a straight shot home on highway 78. Ready to go. And we’re off. Yay!!! Pavement ends 300 feet!!! Views from Black Canyon Road. Historic Black Canyon Bridge. A new bridge is under construction to the left. Looking back down Black Canyon Road. We came from somewhere over near the horizon. Overlooking Santa Ysabel Valley. The town of Julian, aka Tourist Hell. Buffalo burgers for lunch. Oooph!!! Too stuffed to fit in any apple pie. Had to make a stop to get my favorite wine. The Witch Creek Winery is in Carlsbad but they have a tasting room in Julian. Damn!! They’re out of Port; guess I’ll just get a bottle of Muscat Love. The plan at this point was to go straight home via Highway 78 but we’re just not done riding so we head south over to Lake Cuyamaca to take in some nice views and then head down some twisty, seldom traveled back roads back to Highway 78. The buffalo burgers have settled nicely so we stop in at the Julian Pie Company in Santa Ysabel for a slice of Dutch apple pie with vanilla ice cream. Then it’s back home on Highway 78. Here’s my odometer after we pulled into our driveway. Wow, 85.6 miles. It’s official; I’ve completed my first real ride.